Third Thursday Poets #WednesdayWords #WeeklySmile #Poetry

 

Attending my local poetry group’s monthly meetings always makes me smile. Most of the time, I’m inspired to write a poem, and we always have fun together.

The Third Thursday Poets started meeting in 2006 as a weekly class at the senior center. Having just started caring for my late husband at home after he suffered his first paralyzing stroke, writing poetry was a great way for me to deal with the stress of being a family caregiver. You can read more about my experiences in My Ideal Partner: How I Met, Married and Cared for the Man I Loved Despite Debilitating Odds. But I digress.

After the class ended in nine weeks, we decided to meet monthly at the same location. We’ve been meeting there ever since. When the COVID pandemic started, we met via phone conference until we could gather in person again. Members have come and gone, but the idea is still the same. Write, share, and have fun.

We each take turns running the meeting. Our facilitator begins with a prompt that we work with for about twenty minutes. Then, we each share what we’ve written. The facilitator then gives us a “homework assignment,” a suggested prompt for a poem we can bring to the next meeting. We spend the remainder of our time together critiquing poems we brought, some of which were inspired by the “homework assignment” from the previous meeting.

Last Thursday’s meeting was no different. Our facilitator asked us to pick a word from a list she gave us. We were then prompted to write down about three other words or phrases we associated with that particular word. We could then organize all that into a poem.

My chosen word was “meadowlark.” Below is what I came up with. You can click on the title to hear me read it.

 

Meadowlark

by Abbie Johnson Taylor

Copyright 2022.

It’s song rings out over the lake
on a sunny cloudless Wyoming afternoon,
as our boat glides through smooth waters.

Dad and younger brother try to fish
while Mother and I enjoy the bird’s song,
gentle breeze that carries with it
the scent of pine trees,
whiff of worms used for bait.

At the age of thirteen,
I know little about the meadowlark,
enjoy the boat’s gentle motion,
observe, with limited vision, the lake, grass, trees, sky,
happy in summer.

***

What made you smile in the past week? You can comment below or click here to participate in this week’s feature.

A photo of Abbie smiling in front of a white background. Her brown hair is cut short and frames her face. She is wearing a bright red shirt and a dark, flowy scarf swirled with hues of purple, pinks and blues.

New! Why Grandma Doesn’t Know Me

Copyright 2021 by Abbie Johnson Taylor.

Independently published with the help of DLD Books.

The cover of the book features an older woman sitting in a wicker chair facing a window. The world beyond the window is bright, and several plants are visible on the terrace. Behind the woman’s chair is another plant, with a tall stalk and wide rounded leaves. The woman has short, white hair, glasses, a red sweater, and tan pants. The border of the picture is a taupe color and reads "Why Grandma Doesn't Know Me" above the photo and "Abbie Johnson Taylor" below it.

Sixteen-year-old Natalie’s grandmother, suffering from dementia and confined to a wheelchair, lives in a nursing home and rarely recognizes Natalie. But one Halloween night, she tells her a shocking secret that only she and Natalie’s mother know. Natalie is the product of a one-night stand between her mother, who is a college English teacher, and another professor.

After some research, Natalie learns that people with dementia often have vivid memories of past events. Still not wanting to believe what her grandmother has told her, she finds her biological father online. The resemblance between them is undeniable. Not knowing what else to do, she shows his photo and website to her parents.

Natalie realizes she has some growing up to do. Scared and confused, she reaches out to her biological father, and they start corresponding.

Her younger sister, Sarah, senses their parents’ marital difficulties. At Thanksgiving, when she has an opportunity to see Santa Claus, she asks him to bring them together again. Can the jolly old elf grant her request?

***

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Author: abbiejohnsontaylor

I'm the author of three novels, two poetry collections, and a memoir. My work has appeared in various journals and anthologies. I'm visually impaired and live in Sheridan, Wyoming, where for six years, I cared for my totally blind late husband who was paralyzed by two strokes. Please visit my website at: https://www.abbiejohnsontaylor.com

13 thoughts on “Third Thursday Poets #WednesdayWords #WeeklySmile #Poetry”

  1. Good morning, Abbie and All.
    Thanks Abbie for sharing your work here.
    I find something to smile about several times each day. It might be a game of ball or tug with Blue, it might be the sounds of birdsong in the trees as we walk. It’s in the call of one neighbor to another with good wishes for the day.
    There are so many things to smile about it’s incredible and impossible to name them all.
    Thanks again and have a blessed day.
    And of course, keep smiling.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Hi, you’re better at it than I these days. I cannot remember the last time I published something of my own on my blog.

        I’ve been too bogged down in some negativity happening around me and need to go back a bit from it to get my muse active again.

        Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Robbie, thanks so much for visiting the blog and reading Abbie’s work.

      I love May here in Northeast Tennessee. Though later in the summer the humidity will rise and so will the heat, days like today make me smile.

      It makes one want a hammock in the shade with a good book and glass of some frozen mixed drink at their side.

      Keep smiling.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Well, I must admit that my memories are of the weekend my family spent at the lake and not necessarily the meadowlark. But I thought it made for a good poem, and I hope you enjoyed it.

      Like

  2. Thank you for sharing your work here. I wish we had active poetry groups as such around here, I am almost jealous. I love the fact of poems are like paintings, but the brushstrokes are words and the picture is in the mind of a reader. You created a beautiful picture!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Well, you could start a writing group. Find an accessible location such as a YMCA or community center. Send press releases about your first meeting to newspapers, radio stations, etc. Then, see what happens. Your state may have a writers’ organization that offers conferences and other perks. Good luck.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Hi, Abbie brings up a great point to me on another group she shared this on.
    If yyou don’t have a poetry or writing group where you are, start one of your own. Whether online, in person or even in your own neighborhood by inviting people personally while taking a walk, it’s a great idea.

    Liked by 1 person

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